This first week of November brought freezing temperatures and a transition to Thanksgiving related homeschool activities.
See all of the Large Family Homeschool Life posts HERE!
Buster (my sister’s dog whom we are doggy-sitting this week) woke me up with kisses this morning, so I got up and let him and our dog, Kip, out into the backyard. I got Mercy (5) and myself dressed and made the bed. Usually, it is Mercy who wakes me up!
I made a Skillet Apple Dutch Baby from The Peaceful Press (however, I don’t think the recipe is on their website – it came in an email a while back). Then, I ran to Aldi, hoping to find some of the things that were out of stock when I went to the store on Saturday. I did manage to get some soups and a few other things on my list, but I forgot my phone where I keep my grocery list on the Google Keep app! (that figures!)
READ >> Large Family Meal Planning
When I got back home, we started a late Morning Time. We finished reading Philippians 1, and I read From Seed to Pumpkin to the kids since we carved pumpkins yesterday. (Really great science book, by the way!) Here are a few photos of the pumpkins we carved, including the little house Melia (17) and I worked on together!
By the way, we share pumpkins, so you will see “side 1” and “side 2” of the pumpkins. That way we don’t have a gazillion pumpkins to carve!
Then, we painted an Autumn wreath via a watercolor lesson from Lily & Thistle. I purchased her Lifetime Membership because I really want to learn how to watercolor better and her classes are the best I’ve found and easy enough the kids can do them too!
See if you can find my painting! (And Mercy’s!)
After Morning Time, I helped the little girls with their Math, Handwriting, and Phonics. Aspen finished her 3rd reading book!
READ >> Preschool & Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum for the Large Family to learn more about how we homeschool this age!
Then, I checked on Creed who is learning to carry in multiplication via Teaching Textbooks. He’s doing great! I’m really happy that Teaching Textbooks has a new feature where they send me an update on the kids’ work every day to my inbox!
READ >> Review of Teaching Textbooks 4.0
After lunch, I let the boys do a free Minecraft coding class from Code.org. They had fun working together on this project.
I made 3 loaves of bread this afternoon, and got Melia (17) started on the lasagna for tonight’s dinner. We’ll also add broccoli for a vegetable.
Ty’s mom is visiting and wanted to make a pumpkin dip she enjoys, so she worked on that for a dessert with tonight’s dinner. I happened to have everything she needed on hand – pumpkin in a can, whipped topping, and vanilla pudding.
It’s a new month, so the Table Chores have been rearranged and it’s going to take me (and the kids) some time to remember them! I keep the chart on the refrigerator for easy reference.
After dinner, Ty and I grabbed what I forgot at Aldi this morning, along with some lunches for him. And then, we headed to Walmart to finish up our shop. I also found some Christmas and birthday presents for Aspen (6) and Megan (20). They were born on the same day, 14 years apart…in December. Many of our children were born near Christmas, so I am always on the look out for Christmas AND birthday presents this time of year!
READ >> Large Family Birthdays
Brewed cinnamon coffee and tidied up the kitchen before sitting down at the table to plan school today. I also ran outside and gathered a few flat rocks for a painting project I want to do in The Peaceful Press’ Autumn Guide. (keep reading to see the final product!)
Some of the kids worked on school work while I planned. They will reap the benefits of being finished with school earlier than usual!
For Morning Time, I read through all of Philippians 2 as an overview for the weeks to come. Then, I read a delightful book, Bring Me Some Apples and I’ll Make You a Pie – all about gathering different foods in season and based on the life of Chef Edna Lewis. In fact, I so fell in love with this little book, I purchased it right after we read it! There are even recipes in the back for the dishes mentioned in the book!
We all started memorizing Psalm 23:4 (something Autumn Guide suggests), and then I read from If You Lived with the Iroquois and Children of the Longhouse to finish off the morning.
Mercy wanted to sit down with me and “plan” her Special Night for tonight – doughnuts and root beer! So, after Ty and I go out to vote, we’ll stop off to purchase her desired Special Night food.
Ty came home for lunch between his classes. He’s at the local private college today teaching military science to ROTC. It is certainly quite different from his usual job!
The bigs kids began working on puzzles and the little kids are writing stories and needing lots of help spelling words! While they did that, I grabbed my laptop and blogging notebook and proceeded to dig through emails and write a post on making a cooking rotation for your kids.
I talked to both Megan (20) and Blake (23) on the phone, and Blake’s fiancee sent me over the wedding colors; although, I can tell she’s not quite ready to commit to what color she’d like me in.
Here’s the color swatch she’s leaning toward…
Here’s an interesting tidbit about weddings these days. Remember how when many of us got married, we picked a couple of colors and that was it. Well, the swatch above has become the norm today! Varying shades and everyone in a different color!
When Ty got home later today, he fixed his headlight and put new windshield wipers on the van for me. So much better! It’s hard for wipers to manage such a huge windshield!
Then, he and I headed out to vote for city commissioners and school board. Our kids wondered why we would do this since we homeschool, so we explained that we do care what other people’s children are being taught because it will someday directly affect our own children. Children in government-run schools should be given the best education they can possibly be given. It will benefit us all!
Ty and I stopped off to pick up Mercy’s doughnuts and root beer. We also decided to check on some items we were unable to find yesterday. Night diapers for the girls have been scarce, but I was able to get 2 small packages. And toilet paper was nearly non-existent, but Ty did climb up on top of one of the shelves in order to get our favorite brand and snag another brand for another guy who wasn’t able to reach the one package of his brand on the top shelf. Another gentleman said, “Are we back to this again?” Looks like.
When we got home, Keian (15) had a yummy Cobb Salad ready for dinner. We also ate the rest of the homemade bread and a buttermilk pie Ty snagged at Walmart because it intrigued him. It tasted like Gooey Butter Cake (or Chess Cake as some call it) in a pie crust. Hmmm…now the recipe wheels are turning!
After dinner, we hung out with Mercy for her Special Night while the other kids hung out with Ty’s mom who is here visiting for the week.
The temperature was below freezing this morning. I finally caved and turned on the heat in the house. However, I’ll probably be turning it back off again in a couple of days when the weather warms a bit. AND…I keep the thermostat quite low.
For Morning Time, we painted the rocks I set aside yesterday. They are to remind us that the Lord changes our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh.
Then, I read in Philippians 2, and then The Ox-cart Man, and then we did a wool and balloon experiment where we were able to pick up paper with an electrically-charged ballon. Pretty cool!
And of course, we finished up our Morning Time with If You Lived with the Iroquois and Children of the Longhouse. After that, I helped the little girls with their school work and then took the big kids to work at the bee farm.
When I got back home, I took Ty’s mom to the county extension office nearby to get a Farm Account book and then to Sonic to get her and Ty a drink. Ty likes the unsweet blackberry tea there.
When I got home, I started on the biscuit dough pizza for dinner. This is what we call Granny’s Pizza because she always made it this way. The other thing that makes this pizza unique is the fact that it is a ketchup-based sauce! I remember the first time I ate this pizza over at Granny’s house. I was totally weirded out, but it grew on me, and now I actually like it! It was a year ago on Friday that Ty’s Granny passed away, so this seems like a fitting tribute.
After dinner, the boys and I walked Buster, and then we had Family Worship time when the bigs got home from Youth Group.
I gave all the littles baths, and while I was keeping them moving through the baths, my 15 year old came to me with an infected finger from nail-biting! Ack! It looked really bad, so I had him soak it and then I put some activated charcoal on it for overnight. (I really need to buy a bag of activated charcoal instead of breaking open capsules!)
Ty left early this morning and I ended up sleeping in a bit longer than I like. The house is super messy and I’m feeling a little twitchy. Friday cleaning cannot come soon enough!
Then, Keian showed me his finger, and I made an executive decision to cancel my plans with a friend and take him to the doctor on post because he is supposed to be going to a youth camp tomorrow for the weekend and I don’t want this to get any worse.
Morning Time was short because I was too preoccupied with all the cares of the day. We read in Philippians and I read aloud to the kids from Strega Nona’s Harvest, our Iroquois book, and Children of the Longhouse.
I helped the girls with their schoolwork and then took my lunch upstairs because I needed to regroup and give my brain a bit of a break from all the thinking I was doing over the infected finger, the messy house, and upcoming events of the weekend. It did me good to just step back from it all and do something different for a bit.
Then, God intervened! As I was leaving the house to take Melia to work (Keian was not going to work because I had to take him to his doctor’s appointment), her boss called and said she was having a chaotic day and needed to take a break. *huge sigh of relief*
So, we headed back home and I took Keian to his appointment, which involved getting a script for antibiotics. However, he doesn’t know how to take pills, so this is going to be fun. AND he will have to keep up the regimen while at camp. But, I think this was the right call to manage the situation.
Dinner was a baked potato bar, and after dinner the kids made popcorn – a common Thursday night occurrence since we clean the next day. I spent the evening emptying my Google Photos of videos that were taking up so much space Google didn’t want to send me any of my emails! Thankfully, I have a rather large external hard drive to keep them on.
While the kids cleaned this morning, I went through the snow clothes to see what is needed for this year. The boys are growing so fast, and many of the things will not fit them this year. A friend suggested getting on Sierra.com, and I found several reasonably priced items I needed!
I took a short walk in the afternoon and then made another batch of bread. I also put the last banana squash my friend had shared with me into the slow cooker with some cinnamon and juice to make a Banana Squash Butter for our bread. It will have to be stored in the refrigerator, but I have enough room next to the rows of kombucha jars.
The bigs went to work again and then Keian and his friend headed off to catch the bus for camp. Melia will work at a craft fair selling honey for her boss this weekend. Ty and I are going to take her there and then visit several of the local craft fairs. I hope I get a lunch date out of the deal as well!
Dinner was scrambled eggs with bacon and ham, and bread and squash butter.
Later that night, we took Buster back to my sister near the airport when her flight got in. He was so happy to see her! She brought gifts for everyone back with her from Mexico – coffee for Ty and I, spinning tops for the boys, and a hair tie for the girls. We are going to miss Buster, but I think Kip will be glad to have us all to himself again!